longwhitekid

Archive for the ‘Dairy Products’ Category

Edible And Credible

In Cloverdale, Dairy, Dairy Products, gratuitous self-promotion, Kaipara Co-operative Dairy Company, Meadow Maid, milk powder, NZICMA The New Zealand Ice Cream Manufacturer's Association), River Valley, Timespanner on January 2, 2013 at 10.46

Kaipara Dairy Co-op Skim Milk Chef crop

This is just an update post on several things that have been going on, as well as a round-up on the last year – or two, even.

Firstly, I want to thank all the new readers, people who have placed links on their own blogs, and the people that have signed up to follow. After two years the blog is picking up steam and as a result I have made many interesting contacts and friends in the history, research and collecting fields. Longwhitekid has even been listed on the National Library of New Zealand’s website as one of their “go-to” resources on the genre, I was pretty chuffed by that. Now the National Library of Australia are archiving the lot too. Longwhitekid has also been featured recently on the websites of Groove 107.7 FM, The Cultural Mapping Project, NZICMA (The New Zealand Ice Cream Manufacturer’s Association),  and Living in 60s 70s 80s Christchurch on Facebook. Thanks everyone for your support!

Just when I was ready to write off Facebook for good, for the first year they jumped from nowhere to the number one slot – and I received more traffic from there than any other source. Previously most of my visitors have come through from the blogroll of my friend Lisa Truttman’s definitive (not to mention extensive) Auckland history journal Timespanner. Flickr traditionally follows after the fact. The most highly read post was the one I did on Tip-Top’s Moggy Man and TT-2s. The rest of the posts that ranked in the top five most reads were on Whittakers, Reckitt & Colman, Spaceman candy cigarettes, and the history of Buttermaid and the Dustin family business.

It has also brought in some interesting offers. I was adamant from the start, and have maintained that, as one of several projects I work on – I wanted this one to stay simply a pastime. It didn’t have to have an “outcome” for once – it was to be pure enjoyment and didn’t serve any real purpose – a hobby in the definitive sense. Although I have been approached over various tentative writing projects and the like… I have elected to avoid most of them (how many times have I heard “really, you should do a book”- the first time was one too many). However I have finally caved – a few months back I got a very interesting proposition via one of my posts here which has been under discussion for a while now. I’m not at liberty to discuss the details except to say it is moving and that’s the only hint I am going to give. The prospect is a very exciting one!

longwhitekid bite size repeat smaller

With some notoriety comes the down side. Recently I was dismayed to discover that a woman named Sarndra Raybould of Waipukurau had been downloading the artwork from Longwhitekid, my online store, and also my Flickr account, and putting it on various (cruddy, embarrassing) items of merchandise for sale on her website and Trade Me. You can say “well, that’s what you get for putting it out there”, and she did say that – in between the lines . That still doesn’t make it right. I wasn’t the only one. Other people had photos filched, and she took artwork from Wattie’s, Sanitarium and an advertising agency Fly Creative that have worked with everyone from CSR to Edmonds.

Then, when I confronted her and asked for an explanation (not an apology – I never actually got that) , she had the gall to tell me that all I do is “just use bits of other people’s stuff and Photoshop it together” so who am I to criticize  etc. This probably comes from someone that thinks an Adobe Suite is one of the better rooms in a mud hut hotel in the desert somewhere. Anyway, apparently that justifies theft, by denigrating my skills. A weak excuse, and irrelevant I may add. No, I corrected Miss Ravebold – I have respect for what I do – whereas she is just a thief.
She was not even justificatory – she arrogantly believed she had a right to do whatever she pleased. She did take (most of) the stuff she had for sale off Trade Me and her business website. By the end of it she had made me furious which was clearly her intention. What a piece of work! Apparently it was too much to simply say sorry – I would have let it go. I’m good like that.

So, this has led me to placing a copyright by-line on the main page, as well as under every post from now on. It’s unfortunate I have to do this but that is just the way it is – Give some people an inch as they say. I probably should have done this from the start but I really didn’t think anyone would be that interested in anything I am doing. Seemingly, this has all changed. The premise was always sharing information. Sadly, some people will just take whatever you offer up – and further to that clean you out completely.

Kaipara Dairy Co-op Skim Milk Chef  tin label SMALLER

Unlike some people I don’t think I own history; it belongs to no-one and never will belong to anybody. And I don’t personally think that because it comes up on Google, I can just take it. I try to give credit where it’s due, going to some trouble to track down authors and copyrights (many things are from private collections that are kindly and generously lent to me for my use alone). And I try to remember to thank people if they help me. But if you print it off and paste it on a butt-ugly toilet roll holder (which she did) – and then give me an attitude about it, you’re asking for a war. You’ve been warned. Fortunately for me, the Marmite people, pissed off about her use of their imagery, stepped in with their issues and finished the job off for me. Anyway, in lieu of simply biting the bullet and conceding with that one simple word – every time someone Googles Sarndra’s name – this will come up from now until eternity. That’s a pretty apt punishment, I think. And I rank quite highly on search engines, unfortunately for her.

The image at the top is a recreation I have done of yet another label from the Kaipara Dairy Co-op, which I covered here in April 2011 and here in January 2012. I guess it dates from the early 1960s. They don’t come up for sale that often, but they do come up – perhaps once a year. I’d describe these cans as a “hard to get” item. Yet it’s interesting that both Auckland venues MOTAT and the Maritime Museum have the bulk versions of this can in their “ol’ timey grocery” displays – and in multiples. They look in too good condition and are too difficult to get for me to believe they are the real deal; I think someone has made them. I will see them with my own eyes one of these days and be the judge. Anyway, that’s what I’ve done, since I have really wanted an example for my collection for quite a while and every single time I’ve missed out on it. As far as the future of the dairy buildings in Helensville – I recall someone slipped me a note somewhere saying that the building, after being re-listed for auction, was purchased, but by whom – and what for – is unknown. There was talk that it would possibly be grabbed by local council, for an arts precinct – which would be brilliant – but I doubt that’s what happened.

Happy New Year, everyone. Here’s to another fun and interesting year for Longwhitekid.

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Addendum, early Aug 2013: Our chef has a name! Meet Pierre Auguste. Finally this week an ad  turned up showing that Instant Kaipara was in production from at least the late 1950s, also in labelled jars as well as the two sizes of tins. This is the only time I have ever seen the product advertised. 

Recipe Book and Household Guide - Women's division Federated Famers NZ (Inc) - Kaipara Co-op Dairy - Pierre Auguste sml

From the Recipe Book and Household Guide by Women’s division Federated Farmers NZ (Inc)., exact publishing date unknown but appears to be late 1950s-early 1960s.

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All content of Longwhitekid copyright Darian Zam © 2012. All rights reserved.

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Tasteful Transformation: Tip-Top’s TT2 and Moggy Man

In Dairy, Dairy Products, Desserts, Frozen Foods, General Foods Corporation (NZ) Ltd, Ice Cream, Kiwi Classics, Longwhitekid merchandise, Moggy Man, Moggy Man TT2, Tip-Top, Tip-Top Popsicles, TT2 on April 17, 2012 at 10.46

Here’s a recreation of a tatty Moggy Man sandwich board sign for a dairy business,  below, which came up for sale a couple of weeks ago and sold for over  350 dollars; he was the character representing a long gone Tip-Top brand which was shelved in the early 1970s – now it seems highly desirable to collectors.

I’ve already made my way through half of what will no doubt be a significant article on Tip-Top to be published sometime in the next few weeks, so I’ll just give you the bare bones background here.

TT-2 registered trademark, circa 1957

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Tip-Top was the brainchild of two friends, Albert Hayman and Len Malaghan who decided to open an ice cream parlour. The first one was in Manners Street, Wellington and threw its doors open in 1936. Such a success it was – that within just a couple of years they had a string of them dotted around the lower half of the North Island and the top of the South.

TT-2 Moonraider POS poster for dairies, circa  1967, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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By 1938 they had officially formed a company and were manufacturing their own product. The rest, as they say in the tired old world of cliché, is history – and today it can truly be considered one of few truly iconic brands – in fact they are celebrating their 75th birthday this year.

 TT-2 wrapper, early-mid 1960s, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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With somewhere near fifty million litres of ice cream being churned out annually ( literally as well as figuratively), dozens of products on the market and selling internationally – the business ,now under the jurisdiction of Fonterra Co-operative Group, shows no sign of fading away by any means. Not bad going for a company that started out as one milk bar, with  an ice cream confection named after a cow (the Topsy, which is still on the market today).

 TT-2 wrapper, early-mid 1960s, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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Moggy Man was a Tip-Top brand that began life around the late 1950s as the extremely successful TT-2 ice block – one of the earlier Tip-Top brands that were considered a “novelty” line at the time – that said, anything that wasn’t cone ice cream was considered as such. It was an abbreviation of Tip-Top (TT) with a “2” which indicated it’s relegation to second tier product as it was an ice confection – whereas everything else at the time contained  a degree of dairy; mainly cream.

 TT-2 Moonraider wrapper, early-mid 1960s, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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Many baby boomers recall their childhood and fondly remember the TT-2 range in uncomplicated flavours like orange, pineapple, raspberry, coca cola, lime and lemonade – a reflection of simpler times in sunny summer days. By the early to mid 1960s the more sophisticated themes and flavours of Pineapple Pole, Jaffa Dip, Banana Shake, Raspberry Dazzle, Squidley Twin (an Octopus theme in two flavours), Sweet Orange, Milkshake, Hokey Pokey, White Lemonade, and Moonraider were being tried out on the more adventurous tastebuds of the public.

 TT-2 wrapper, early-mid 1960s, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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Sometime around the end of 1967 or so, the character had been introduced to make a conglomeration “Moggy Man TT2”, a “space-shaped ” ice (not as interesting as it sounds) with milk and extra sugar added – and new varieties to go with this revamped theme of Sunspot, Meteor, Lunar, and with the former Moonraider continued.

Moggy Man TT2 wrapper, circa 1968

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By 1968 the old part of the name had been completely resigned to the scrapheap and the character stood alone as a brand with the space motif continued in varieties like Star Strobe, Red Rocket, Concorde (orange and lemon), Astro Flash, and Zero X .

Moggy Man TT2 wrapper, circa 1968

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However he seemed to be fizzling out and the last ad I’ve seen in the early 1970s shows basic raspberry, chocolate, lime, and orange milk ices in the range. He must have vanished into a black hole soon after – I suspect he was gone by 1974. I  certainly don’t remember Moggy Man being around – and he was eventually replaced a few years later by the Popsicle range – “coolest band in the land”. They weren’t really…the whole “ice lolly as faux rock star” campaign and branding was kind of tacky. Bring back MM, I say – he was much neater!

 I found this document for the Moggy Man character being registered to Peters Ice Cream of NSW, circa 1968. I don’t understand what this is about or why they had posession of the brand at the same time as Tip-Top. I can only imagine it was a licensing deal to launch the brand in Australia, because Peters were  only present in New Zealand in the 1930s and didn’t make a “comeback” until the 1990s.I find no further mention of a presence outside of New Zealand, so one can assume it was not a success. 

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Moggy Man POS poster for dairies, circa 1970, courtesy of Fonterra’s Tip-Top archives.

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I’ve got my high quality recreation of the Moggy Man poster for sale on Redbubble store as posters here;

http://www.redbubble.com/people/darianzam/works/8731662-untitled?p=poster

and cards here.

http://www.redbubble.com/people/darianzam/works/8731662-tip-top-moggy-man?c=130101-kiwiana-cards

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Addendum, mid-October 2012:   I was wondering why I never found this advert until now. This is why – In a very weird coincidence Archives NZ uploaded it the very same day I published my article. Now what are the chances of that? This ad pinpoints the above poster to circa 1970 when Astro Flash and Zero X were probably first released.

How It All Pans Out

In Blue Moon Ice Cream, cordial, Crystal Springs Aerated Water Factory, Dairy Products, Denne Brothers, Desserts, Fonterra, Frozen Foods, Frozen Vegetables, Hellaby's, Ice Cream, Pastry, Peter Pan Frozen Foods Ltd, Peter Pan ice cream, Rush Munro, soft drink, Tip-Top, Tokomaru Steam Engine Museum on April 9, 2012 at 10.46

This point-of-sale poster probably dates from the mid-late 1960s and was no doubt created for dairy (milkbar) promotion.

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Working on this project it constantly reminds me, as well as amazes me, that something that was so popular for so long – can seemingly disappear, almost without a trace. I also find it surprising that something that has been such a part of people’s lives – in this case a district’s main employer too – can fade from the memory so quickly and be forgotten within just a few years.

When you ask people about Peter Pan ice cream most of them remember it well. Yet it has taken me about a year to scratch together information for the story on the once renowned brand that shut up shop as late as the early 1980s; and although famous for their ice creams and novelty ice confections – it actually goes back much further than their two Waipukurau-based factories which were landmarks for many years. In fact the brand was started by T.C. (Thomas Clement) Denne who had quite a history in manufacture prior to that era. Actually, Denne Brothers started as a soft drink concern that went right back to at least the 1910s.

This painted tin sign probably dates from the 1950s.

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The Denne family originally hailed from Canterbury, Kent in the U.K., with T.C.’s second cousin William Henry Denne arriving to New Zealand in 1851; and T.C.’s father Clement Denne following with his wife Alice and one month old daughter Lucy aboard the “Wild Deer” – apparently in 1875. However sales records of 1873 clearly show they bought land so we can presume that William helped; he probably scouted and bought property for them at their request – or it was purchased on spec. The family settled in Mataura in the lower South Island, where we find Clement selling his land as well as a blacksmith’s business (his trade) by 1890. Several years later a smithy business in the same town is being advertised as ex a certain John Denne – perhaps Clement’s older brother (born 1829) who may have joined them and set up shop too – or just another error of details in reportage we so often encounter in newspapers of those times.

T.C was born in 1882 and apart from school notices where an Alice, Emily and Lottie Denne are also name-checked (likely sisters) the first mention of him in the media comes in 1897 when as a fifteen year old he was injured on the job in a rather nasty accident. Mataura was chiefly famous for their paper mill and still is – and it was here, presumably on his first foray into the workforce from school that T.C had his hand crushed and de-gloved between some rollers, involving skin grafts from other parts of his body to repair the serious damage.
By 1904 T.C. was located in Milton, not far from Mataura, as first secretary then later deputy bandmaster of the town’s brass band, performing with both Baritone and Euphonium Tubas. Music – particularly brass bands – was to remain a life-long love, and regardless of what lingering effects of his paper mill accident had – he did not let it hold him back in his endeavours.

This backlit perspex sign probably dates from the 1960s, likely for the interior of a milkbar or cafe.

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I believe his family probably remained in the Mataura-Milton area but we can conject that T.C. somehow moved into the cordial and soft drink industry gaining experience, possibly moving to another area on his way to the lower North Island. By 1915 he had appeared in Masterton where he had opened a factory with a depot at 169 Queen Street for both retail and wholesales; Denne’s Aerated Waterworks was producing aerated water, soda, hop ale, ginger beer, ginger ale, as well as sarsaparilla and raspberry cordials, and not long after he acquired modern technology and introduced his Fruity Lemonade sealed in a new-fangled crown seal bottle.
At the same time he was producing Denne’s Golden Malt Pure Table Vinegar from an Eketahuna set-up – and a later mention in a newspaper of 1919 states that T.C. Denne “was for some years in business at Eketahuna, and has been established in Masterton four years”.  So, likely that business existed for some time before the Masterton factory; and was perhaps dispensed with sometime after 1916 since there is no mention of it again that I can find.

Denne sells up in Masterton and moves on; Wairarapa Daily Times, 2 December 1919.

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Between 1916-1919 advertisements for Denne’s Delicious Drinks, as they were now being touted, make mention of Wairarapa as a “dry district” and he was marketing in both bottles and gallon jars the following refreshments- hop beer, dandy shandy, ginger beer, lime juice and soda, squash, and others. The Wairarapa electorate voted to ban production and sale of alcoholic drinks in their district in 1908, and this remained the status quo until it was overturned in 1946 so no doubt the hops ale, beer, and shandy although fermented – were non-alcoholic drink, and his move to the Wairarapa district may have tied in with this prohibition period since his strong ties to the Seventh-day Adventist movement would prescribe no alcohol and caffeine (note he also never seemed to offer cola drinks).
During this time he kept up his musical endeavours, having progressed to the role of conductor for both the Masterton Municipal Silver Band and the Masterton Central Brass Band by 1917.
In 1919 he quit the bands “for business reasons”, and then sold his Masterton factory to a Neil Wotton who renamed the brand Crystal Springs. A newspaper ad also shows him selling a motorbike from 270 Queen Street Masterton, perhaps an new or additional depot to keep up with demand, or- perhaps this was a domestic address.

Denne’s drink varieties for dry districts ; Wairarapa Daily Times , 23 December, 1916.

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By March of 1920 he had departed Masterton for good – being publicly presented with a silver engraved conductor’s baton as a goodbye gift – but where he went and what he was doing for the next decade is at present unknown. That is until he crops up in the paper as having started up a new company to manufacture cordials – T.C. Denne and Co, Ltd, in 1930 in Waipukurau – and the original factory (later known as the Peter Pan No. 1 Factory, unfortunately no images I know of exist) was established in Ruataniwha Street.


Tony Smith, Napier historian and collector says that there is information on Denne drinks that goes from 1938 back to 1926 that he knows of, and these one gallon stone crocks were issued in 1928 as well as 1930, but if that was in another location besides Waipukurau is unknown at present, and still leaves at least six years of the 1920s unaccounted for.

Soft drink and cordial business continued as usual until Denne started making ice cream for sale around 1938, not long after the tragic death of his first son John Clinton Denne in an accident at 22 years old, when his motorcycle hit a truck head on on a highway outside of the town the year previously. I think it’s an interesting point to consider that T.C. embarked on a major diversion from his successful tried and true formula at this time. It must have been a roaring success for by 1940 it had far usurped the drink business – so he let that go, selling that arm of the business first to a Stan Nickle, then Bert Anderson, and later D.H. Newbiggins of Hastings – according to Tony Smith, a Napier-based historian and collector who has been compiling a book on Hawkes Bay cordials, brewery and chemist bottles. I was able to find a Waipukurau based Bert Anderson who sung bass and baritone in bands so that would be the connection; but as for the other two names – no clues (Smith likely means E.J.D. Newbigin who was a well-known Hastings brewer and cordial maker from 1881). From the records it looks like Denne didn’t officially register the Peter Pan ice cream brand until 1946, however they likely started using the name much earlier than that.

The Tokomaru Steam Engine Museum have in their collection a 1937 William Sisson & Co. Ltd. (of Gloucester) model, bought from Denne Brothers, “acquired around 1967. It was going to be used as a standby generator if there was a power cut. I presume (they divested it) when the factory no longer had a need for a steam engine. As far as we know the Dennes never used it” says Esma Stevenson, curator. It must have been bought around 1940 when there was a decisive direction to go into the ice confection business permanently.
T.C. passed away in 1950 and it seems that his two remaining sons Tom Jr. (Thomas Vernon Denne 1917-1983) and Haydn ( an unusual spelling he adopted of his birth name Maxwell Hayden Denne, 1921- 2008) inherited the business. From then on it was known unofficially as Denne Brothers, and then later on as Peter Pan Frozen Foods. They well and truly took control and redirected the branding, and were beginning to expand and market the name with fervour.

This galvanized metal and wood, hand-painted  sandwich-board sign probably dates from the 1960s, for the side walk outside of a dairy, milkbar or cafe.

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There were two factories in the town that came to be known as numbers 1 and 2. Peter Pan No .1 factory was at 177-183 Ruawahine Street andthe corner of Cook Street,Waipukurau (now 2 Takapu Road). It was the original T.C. Denne & Co’s drinks building and was an expansive premises. This was where ice cream tubs and packs, waffle cones for the Trumpets and also for retail sale, and later in the early 1970s doughnuts were all made, as well as serving as “head office”. The offices and waffle-making room were on the second floor. The waffle cones were made for the Drumstick ice creams,  the slices, and they were also packed into boxes as their own individual product which were then sold throughout different shops says Pam Blackberry, who worked on that line for a couple of years in the late 1960s. This rambling establishment probably had many additions over time – records show a dispute that went to court with the local council over redevelopment in 1966. Haydn Denne lived in Cook Street opposite where No. 1 factory was until he passed away in 2008. You can see a photo of the factory in my previous post here:

https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/neverbland/

A reconstructed wrapper of the popular  Treasure Tip  – an ice block with a jelly baby in it. This dates from the mid to late 1960s and obviously the same artist that designed all the posters I’ve featured so far over the last year or so.

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Approximately a kilometre further away on Takapu Road, Waipukurau was No. 2 – which was focussed on the ice confections, and frozen foodstuffs arms of the business.

As well as ice cream produced in cones, slices, Drumsticks, and a variety of pint and quart boxes in flavours like Bonanza, Cherry Chequer, Vanilla Supreme and Golden Whip – Former employees of the early 1960s onwards remember in particular the highly popular novelties Nutty Cha Chas (ice cream dipped in chocolate with nuts), Pink Elephants (pink ice cream rolled in chocolate flakes), Tutti Fruttis, Jelly Tips (ice cream coated in chocolate with a tip made of jelly ) and the popular Jolli-Lollis “which was an iceblock mix in a sachet”, says Tony Dean. “The Jolli-Lollis were like cordial mixed up in big vats then pumped through a machine into the plastic sachets and sealed, then packed into boxes and frozen, and that is how the shops got them – this was the machine I worked at, The only time I ventured into the freezer was to put the boxes of ice blocks away once they got packed, and then it was in and out fast”, recounts Pam Blackberry. “(There was a) fear of being locked in those freezers!” remembers Hazel Hori.
The ice confections were produced specifically out of the No.2 Factory and some were the Lime Ice Delite, Fruit Salad, Peter-Cream, Red Rocket, Blueberry (blackberry and lemonade flavour), Scramble, Orange Sparkle, and the Dazzle which I posted on here:

https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/06/21/petering-out/

Margaret Gee was employed from 1964-1968. “I worked at Peter Pan for four years as a churn operator filling the moulds that were then placed into the brine tanks”. Tony Dean worked from the mid to late 1960s for several years and “from what I can remember the moulds in which the ice block shapes were made held about 20 items, and a stick holder was put in the top of the mould. The moulds were put in a tank of brine for about twenty minutes and when taken out were inserted in a tank of hot water for a few seconds to release the product; and were then put through the wrapping machine. The refrigerant used was ammonia”.
A Peter Pan specialty were novelty ice blocks with confectionery imbedded in them. Tony Dean recalls “the Treasure Tip, with a jelly baby in the tip – the jelly babies were inserted manually in each mould” – others were the Red Knight with a “Honey Bunny” and the Hello Dolly of the late 1960s had a “Dolly Lolly”.

https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/09/05/sugary-strategies-and-delicious-devices/

There were probably many more variations perhaps capitalising on popular culture of the time.

A reconstructed wrapper of the Jolli-Lolli  – an ice block sealed in a plastic sachet and frozen.

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By 1966 at the latest Peter Pan were producing frozen foods from the No. 1 factory , and Tony Dean remembers Peter Pan had a fleet of trucks to handle a contract to distribute frozen foods around the North Island for Hellaby’s (probably most well-known to Kiwis for canned corned beef), in particular – chickens, and frozen vegetables including peas. Posters advertising products of the mid-late 1960s show frozen flaky puff pastry on offer, and a range of ready-to-cook fast foods that were probably wholesaled to takeaway businesses such as spring rolls, curry rice rolls, steak cobs, fish cobs, chicken croquettes, and hamburger rolls (not bread buns – probably a deep fried meat filled pastry not unlike the Australian Chiko Roll, given the nature of the rest of the range they had at the time) . There was also a line of syrups for milkshakes, thickshakes and sundaes, probably also coming out of the No. 1 premises given the related products.

A reconstructed wrapper of the popular Pink Elephant  – a pink ice cream rolled in chocolate flakes. This dates from the mid to late 1960s.

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Tony Dean says “The Dennes were excellent bosses to work for. On Friday nights every staff member used to get 1 litre of ice cream and a pack of frozen peas, and at Christmas time a frozen chook as well”. Augustine Dunbar , who worked 1972-1974 also recalls “they used to give us 3 quart boxes on Friday (I’m not sure if she means three separate quart boxes, or the three pint box).
“I used to love eating the ice cream straight out of the churn before it went into the containers and freezers. Also the jelly babies, the chocolate, strawberries and peanuts before they went into the production line. It is probably one of the best jobs I had”, says Tony Dean. “Finger-dipping into the ice-cream straight out of the churn I remember (well), the foul smell of the chocolate melting”, adds Hazel Hori.
The company even had their own “Peter Pan Bus” that travelled to and from Waipawa and Waipukurau to pick up staff of a morning and drop them off in the evening. The Dennes were known as fair and generous employers; and so many people from the surrounding area were employed it was worthwhile. Hazel Hori who worked there between 1963-1965 remembers: “Many “Ypuk” (Waipukurau) people spent part of their working lives at Peter Pan factory. My dad Henry Munday worked at Peter Pan for many years, my mother joined the staff in the 1970s, my brother Eric worked there too for a time , along with me – during the school holidays packing ice blocks and ice creams” – it was almost a rite of passage to do at least a short stint there first before leaving the security of the locale heading out into the wide world.

Trucks outside the No.1 Factory in Takapu Road. The part of the building that is still standing today on a mostly vacant lot – can be seen behind far left.

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Trademark records of the early 1970s show product names Country Gold, Fudgsicle, Softee, and Captain Hook products were being manufactured as well as doughnuts being produced in the No. 1 Factory, as briefly mentioned earlier.
Although their father had passed away some time before and their mother Agnes in 1957 – the traditional family faith remained strong. By 1962 the Seventh Day Adventist movement, well-known for their involvement in food product (see my article https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/11/26/healthy-curiosity/ on Sanitarium) had made the move across the Tasman to the Hawkes Bay area and assumed control of two churches to establish themselves in the local vicinity. In 1965 the devout and by now, no doubt quite prosperous, Denne family donated land for a church and a two-teacher church school. T.C.’s grandson John Denne continues that religious inheritance and is a pastor in Australia.

This point-of-sale poster probably dates from the mid-late 1960s and was no doubt created for takeaway shop promotion.

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As for the mysterious Peter Pan parlour that nobody seemed to recall seeing – after writing to twenty or more people I received a reply from the Eketahuna Museum suggesting that the mystery store may be located in an enclave to the south of Waipukurau, named Norsewood, a Scandinavian-settled town established in the 1870s (hence the name). Since the Dennes never had any relation to this town that I know of – It still left the question of who built it, and more to the point – why? Doug Ellison, Caretaker at Norsewood Pioneer Museum says:
” It wasn’t specifically a Peter Pan store but it sold the ice cream which was just about all we could get (at the time) actually. It was originally just the usual country store, that sold the stuff that any grocery would sell. There was another dairy that sold Peter Pan but it didn’t have a big sign like that. The people that lived in the house did it up to look like the old store at the front, so it would resemble when it was a thriving business – which it hasn’t been for a number of years. I don’t know who owned it at the time. The house is now empty and the building is used as storage. I think it must have been someone from Dannevirke who did a bit of painting about the place to bring it back to what it was. The heritage signs were put around a few old buildings for our festival a couple of years back so that people knew what they had once been. I don’t remember any other (local) brand for sale in the area except Rush Munro, who had a place in Hastings, about 1000 Herataunga Street East – it was called Blue Moon (Rush Munro’s is still open at 704 West, and is arguably New Zealand’s oldest ice cream brand – I’ll post on this story later in the year).

The remaining part of the far left side of the Peter Pan No. 1 Factory on  the corner of Takapu Road and Cook Street, Wapukarau -which has now been somewhat remodelled. 

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John Denne, Tom Denne Jr.’s son was managing the business for some time, but left the town for good in 1971. According to records I’ve found Peter Pan was offering redundancy packages to employees at the end of the 1970s so they must have hit a spot of financial troubles, that or behemoth Tip-Top had stepped in and major changes were afoot. Most people seem to remember the factory being open until at least the early eighties when the rights were probably sold to Tip-Top.
Jan Gosling, one of the curators at Waipawa Museum remembers “when we moved to Waipawa in 1990 the old Peter Pan buildings were still there (in Waipukurau), with faded labels of the ice cream factory (on the walls) and it always seemed a little sad. It’s funny how when things disappear or change into something else you forget about what was there before”. Sometime after that they were demolished; “there isn’t much left of that (factory) now” says Pam Blackberry. The only remains I can spot are the far left side of the structure which has been somewhat remodelled and serves as the Hatuma Engineering Supplies premises.
The original Ruawahine Street No. 1 factory’s site closer to town is renumbered and the street renamed; and the allotment now has a new, one story building, the Central Hawkes Bay Health Centre, set back on the corner of it but is a mostly unobstructed tract of vacant land on the corner where the expansive buildings of Peter Pan Frozen Foods used to be a town landmark.

Mystery finally solved – the tribute to Peter Pan Ice Cream in the small town of Norsewood, was created for fun to replicate an old town general store that originally had a sign like this when it was operating.

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Although the brand name has remained in limbo for nearly thirty years with the trademark rights renewed to Tip-Top Investments as part of Fonterra Brands Limited, it finally lapsed and was cancelled at the end of 2010, bringing the saga of the  Peter Pan brand to a close for good. Not for me though – the story still has some gaping holes such as – how did Denne enter the business and learn his trade?, and what he was doing between 1920 in Masterton and 1930 in Wairarapa? I’m hoping that I’ll find out more so stay tuned.

As usual, I have a large rollcall of people to thank for memories, images, leads, information and tip-offs: Jana Uhlirova, curator, Central Hawkes Bay Settler’s Museum, Pam Blackberry (1968-1970) and Tony Dean (1966-1973), ex-employees of Peter Pan Frozen Foods; Andy May and Donna Gwen Hoby, one time acquaintances of the Dennes, Colin and Esma Stevenson, owners and curators at the Tokomaru Steam Museum, Doug Ellison, Caretaker at Norsewood Pioneer Museum, Tony Smith , historian and collector for information on Denne drinks, Brian Turner for image of Denne crock, Jan Gosling, curator at Waipawa Museum.

Bite Size: Reconstituted Retro

In Cloverdale, Dairy, Dairy Products, Fonterra, Kaipara Co-operative Dairy Company, River Valley on January 9, 2012 at 10.46

Here I have recreated the label for a Meadow Maid milk powder can which probably dates from the early 1960s. They come up for sale every once in a while, maybe every eight months or so. I am pretty sure I remember my grandparents having one of these around at some point when I was a youngster. I am fairly sure it wasn’t new then, but being used to store something else; perhaps in the kitchen cupboards but more likely nails or screws in my grandfather’s workshop.  This was produced by the Kaipara Dairy Co-op which I previously wrote about in this post “The Creamy Dragon Strikes Again” back in April:

https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/04/15/the-creamy-dragon-strikes-again/

Kaipara produced several products that I know of including skim and full fat milk powder, ice cream mix, malted milk, margarine and gouda – under different brand names .

I can’t see what’s on the back of the can from any of the images I have, so I sort of “imagined” the rest of the label by basing it on the design on the back of another yellow Kaipara tin with a snooty chef on it, that is in both the MOTAT and Voyager New Zealand Maritime Museum ol’ timey general store collections respectively (I am pretty sure they are reproductions, it’s interesting how they both have new-looking large versions of them, I’d like to know the story behind that). The yellow can is a neat design that’s on my list to add to my collection but I haven’t been successful in yet getting one. I’ve never seen what the malted milk can looks like and don’t know what brand name it was under.

I hadn’t heard anything further about the situation with the long-abandoned Kaipara Dairy buildings since the council had ordered the removal of them early last year; and the last news item appeared in April of 2011 – in which residents were still agitating for the old factory to be turned to rubble. However it seems the factory site is still standing and an auction was slated yet again, this time for December 2011. Someone posted this clip of their interior tour in October

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqeOPTiOeAU

and it looked like it was cleaned up a little for the sale. Same as the last time, I suspect it was passed in. There’s rumbling about a community art space, which sounds good to me.

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Addendum, early Aug 2013: Finally this week an ad  turned up showing that Meadow Maid was in production from at least the late 1950s. This is the only time I have ever seen the product advertised. 

Recipe Book and Household Guide - Women's division Federated Famers NZ (Inc) - Kaipara Co-op Dairy -  Meadow Maid sml

From the Recipe Book and Household Guide by Women’s division Federated Farmers NZ (Inc)., exact publishing date unknown but appears to be late 1950s-early 1960s.

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All content of Longwhitekid copyright Darian Zam © 2013. All rights reserved.

An Elaborate Process

In Blue Bonnet Jams, Butland Industries, cheese, Chesdale Cheese, Craig's Jams, Crest Fine Foods, Dairy, Dairy Products, Fonterra, Goldpack dried fruits, H.J Heinz Company, Kraft Foods, New Zealand Milk Brands Limited, Spreads, Wattie's on December 6, 2011 at 10.46

I’m  excited to present this recreation of a Chesdale cheese ad. This is probably the most complex thing I have attempted so far and have put it off for a few months because I knew it was going to be hard. As I am getting more daring at my recreation work I felt I was ready to tackle this one from a blurry, bad quality picture. This took about two days of frustrating work to make; starting with designing the three individual paper labels for the cheese segments, then the foil wedge, then the six wedges in the box, and the cartoons of the family which I could hardly see properly. As well as all the fonts which had to be hand-kerned and often recreated from scratch.
This item probably dates from around 1958, and was in a promotional booklet for a company named Butland Industries which had a lot of other nice colourful ads in it showcasing their products of the moment. At the time their other hugely successful brand besides Chesdale was Crest Fine Foods (canned fruit, and vegetables, including baked beans and spaghetti – I think this brand fizzled out in the early 1970s). Later on they had Goldpack dried fruits – as well as jam brands Blue Bonnet and Craig’s which I remember well from childhood.

It was for auction a few months ago and I really wanted to grab it – unfortunately I had just missed the end of the auction. I would have paid more money by far than it sold for, too. I was so desperate to get hold of the imagery that I approached the seller and also the buyer to try and get better photos of the advertising pages – to no avail. Unfortunately that tack didn’t work out so well to say the least, so the next best thing was to just to buckle down and make it myself.

Chesdale Cheese ad, between 1926 and 1949. Ref: Eph-A-FOOD-1940s-01. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand.

Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a lot of information available either about the history of the Chesdale cheese brand or about Sir Jack Butland and his company. What we do know is he was born in Hokitika in 1896 but spent most of his life based in Auckland, where he started in foodstuffs as an agent – after earlier careers in banking and sales.
He came to be considered a pioneer in food manufacturing. He founded J. R. Butland Pty Ltd in 1922, NZ Cheese four years later in 1926, and Butland Industries proper in 1949. I know that Crest was launched in 1956 – and that the packaging had changed by 1961 – so this booklet dates from some time in between. I conject on the earlier side.
In the days before widespread refrigeration, traditional cheeses sweated, went oily, cracked, and quickly went stale. Jack Butland combated this problem by experimenting with additives, and found that adding amounts of sodium or potassium phosphate would make the cheese smooth textured and spreadable – and it would actually keep well, remaining moist and hygienic.

Chesdale Cheese, between 1949 and 1951. From cover of Four Square Stores promotional jigsaw puzzle envelope.  Ref: Eph-F-GAMES-1950s-05-cover. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand.

He was obviously already successful, but his was his big breakthrough. He sold it wrapped in aluminium foil, in an 8 ounce cardboard carton and later in disc shaped boxes as per the ad.

He was eventually knighted mainly for his significant philanthropic contributions some time before he passed away in 1982.
Chesdale was sold to Kraft in 1981 and then sold to Heinz Wattie in 1995. It currently is owned by New Zealand Milk Brands Limited. Chesdale is still in production today, however it also has an enormous market in the Middle East.
Chesdale is of course now considered an icon of Kiwiana, mostly for the famous Ches and Dale character TV commercials – of course they came much later in around 1968, created by advertising agency Dormer Beck -which I have a long story coming up on next week, so I will cover it in more depth then.

No Business Like Snow Business

In Dairy, Dairy Products, Desserts, Frozen Foods, I.R. Paterson Ashburton, Ice Cream, Irvine, Irvine & Stevenson, Peacock, St. George on October 23, 2011 at 10.46

Snowdrop Ice Cream. I have searched high and low using every term I can think of with the few clues that I have, and have turned up nothing about this product. Or company. Or the owner. The only information I have is that the address was being used by a butcher in 1906, as a notice appeared in the Ashburton Guardian that year- indicating that previously there had also been a butchery on the premises. It is really unusual to not be able to find a single thing out with information like the brand name, the owners name, and street address. I can’t ask for more leads than this, yet I have come up with zilch. Compared to my recent story on Dustin’s and Buttermaid it seems sort of ridiculous not to be able to produce anything at all. I have written to the Ashburton museum to see if they have any more information on this item which is in their collection . Anyway I’m guessing post 1945 for this item, I’d say between late 1940s and mid 1950s.

Photo of assembled Snowdrop box, courtesy of Ashburton Museum collection, object no. 4.99.124

There have been a lot of these turning up on the collectables market lately, and in fact you can get them at quite a reasonable price. A friend nabbed this one for me in Auckland for two dollars in a sale which was one of the best bargains ever. They must be ex-factory stock as they are all mint and still flat packed. I can only assume that they were found during a renovation probably at the address listed on the box which is 141 East Street Ashburton (the town is south of Christchurch). Who knows what the deal is.

141 East Street Ashburton premises, The Ashburton Guardian, 24 November 1906, Page 3

It’s probably rather like the story behind the amount of Peacock can labels that have been around for quite some time – in fact I can remember them being for sale when I had just started collecting as a child – I used to see them at swap meets and the like. Apparently they came out of the factory during demolition. I am fairly sure that I read the story somewhere recently told by an employee of the factory that there was some kind of a space in the rafters above the offices and rather than take label stock back to the store room, it was common practice to lazily throw them into the ceiling where they stayed until discovered during dismantling of the building – and thus they have been doing the rounds ever since.

I can’t remember where I’ve read this recounting but it was in the last couple of weeks, and probably in relation to some cursory research I did on the St George jam factory (both St George and Peacock were brands of Irvine & Stevenson).

Rather like the Snowdrop boxes the Peacock stuff has lost its cachet (well, to me anyway) because of the frequency with which they turn up for sale. In fact the price on both items is dropping drastically so now Peacock items are going for between $1.00 and $3.50 apiece (even less in multiple offerings), with St George dropping to around five dollars on average, and asking any more will generally result in it being passed in. Same situation with the Snowdrop boxes as people have an inability to move a common item. Although beautiful designs they don’t have much appeal for many dedicated collectors due to their lack of rarity. I’ll update if any additional info materialises.

 

Postscript, mid September 2012: Mystery no more. In the meantime someone with a lot of information as well as leads, has come forward regarding  Snowdrop, and I will be updating on this brand soon. 

Sugary Strategies And Delicious Devices

In Dairy, Dairy Products, Desserts, Fonterra, Frozen Foods, Ice Cream, Peter Pan ice cream, Tip-Top on September 5, 2011 at 10.46

I previously wrote about the Peter Pan brand initially here in April 2011 https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/neverbland/ and then here again https://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/2011/06/21/petering-out/ in June 2011.
Until now I have had little to work with, but today came some big breakthroughs on finding information – and it seems like the brand may have been around for quite a while before Tom and Hayden Denne became famous for their ice cream. Ah, the pitfalls of research. Time and again I’ve experienced that just one missing letter can make or break, when it comes to tracking down historical data. I guess it’s not my fault that I didn’t guess Haden actually had a Y in it since the information was passed from someone else who knew them both.

I’ll post some more soon when the dots are joined – but in the meantime , here is yet another poster I have recreated from the low res photos of the 1960s Peter Pan series that someone was auctioning off on Trademe a while back.
Peter Pan seemed to have cornered the market in kitschy novelty product in their day, and one gimmick was moulded candies ( “honey bunnies” and “dolly lollies”) impregnated inside the confection such as here with the Hello Dolly product.

A friend remembers having one of them as a child, recalling a blue-coloured iceblock or ice cream –  placing the time in the early to mid-1960s. In the case of this particular product and its accompanying promo material, it would have been produced to profiteer off the back of the movie starring Audrey Hepburn which was released in 1969.

More on the Peter Pan brand and my ongoing series of recreations later in the year.

More Ice Age Than Frosty

In Dairy Products, Desserts, Frosty Boy, Ice Cream, Tip-Top on July 7, 2011 at 10.46


Something very interesting came to light a few days ago when fellow collector and Flickr member Steve Williams aka stevepwnz uploaded an ice cream cup from part of his collection, an old Tip-Top container featuring a character that I’ve never seen before, certainly it wasn’t widely used that I am aware of.

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I’ve recreated the graphic as best I can from the photos, which he very kindly put up an extra of – after I requested I’d like to see more of it.
It immediately struck me of the similarities with the famous Frosty Boy brand character. We had a brief discussion opining on the resemblance between the two.


Frosty Boy resonates with most New Zealanders of my generation as a brand they remember well from their childhood, but in actual fact Frosty Boy is not really a Kiwi – he was created in Australia in 1976. I mentioned recently that there are quite a few “cross-overs” in the Australasian market. Frosty boy remained as an Antipodean whole until Bonlac purchased the company from Australian Dairies in the 1990s and split it across the two countries.

The logo has changed very little from inception. Here’s a piece of a milkshake cup I cut out and kept from the late 1980s. The brand is still going strong today and the product range has expanded to include a surprisingly large selection: frozen yoghurt, milkshake syrups , toppings, analogue cream  (layman: mock) powder, Belgian chocolate powder, Chai Latte, slushies, gelato, gourmet syrups, Frappés, jellies, cones, as well as of course their famous soft serve ice cream.
Given the retro/rocker stylings I always assumed, by the time I was aware of and appreciated such things in my late teens, that Frosty Boy was much older than he actually is -from circa mid 1950s to mid 1960s I imagined. But in fact it would have been inspired, like products such as “Fonzies” (see previous post) to cash in on the mid seventies revival heralded by “Happy Days” and “Laverne & Shirley”.

Let’s compare the two characters side by side shall we? Hmmm. Interesting.
I definitely think that this Tip-Top cup is the real deal from the first half of the 1960s though, so it preceded Frosty Boy by quite a few years at the least.

Do I think that the Frosty Boy character was an entirely original concept after seeing this? No, I don’t. There’s just too many similarities for it to be a coincidence.

Addendum September 2011: Interestingly, it has come to my attention via a museum that a New Zealand  ice cream concern named Barlow’s was first using the slogan “Often Licked, Never Beaten” probably in the 1930s. It was then used by the Dunedin-based Royal Ice Cream Co. in the 1950s. It‘s  also recalled it was perhaps used by the Snowdrop Ice Cream brand  in Dunedin in the 1950s (possible, but doubtful). This  was later picked up and used by Tip Top for a time – probably by way of Royal brand which it acquired (along with every other Kiwi ice cream business that didn’t just eventually fold under pressure from them). Now synonymous with the Frosty Boy brand. Yet another “coincidence”? 

No Scoop

In Dairy Products, Desserts, Frozen Foods, Ice Cream, New Zealand Dairies Limited, Wards Ice Cream Company on January 23, 2011 at 10.46

There’s not much to know about this obscure one at all. It probably dates from the very early 60’s judging by the typeface and style. Was it a short lived product? Most likely.

The Waimate District in the South Island is a very productive agricultural area including dairy farming.

A telling piece of information – When the branch line was closed on 31 March 1966, Waimate became the first major town in New Zealand to lose its railway connection.

This was most probably the death knell for the Ward’s brand as transport may have made it difficult to sustain a quality product.

Train would have been the main and most efficient mode of moving goods- and the loss may have also made the business unviable by other forms of transport. That said, when you have no information to go on, the background story could be anything and I’ve turned up some pretty wild ones in my time.

This item was for sale on Trademe last week and The seller seems to remember buying this box at a swap meet in South Canterbury, To the north. I located a smallish concern named “New Zealand Dairies Limited” which are physically based in South Canterbury but have a Waimate postal address. I could be wrong but I am guessing that once upon a time they were probably the manufacturers of this product.

I faithfully recreated the graphic of the top and front of the carton. It was more the challenge than penny-pinching that inspired me;  I wanted to see if I could achieve it and make it look real with little detail to work from. I’m very happy with the result.